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May 29, 2018

Hungary's FM: Bulgaria's proposal on migration poses a “serious danger” to Europe

Bulgaria’s proposal essentially means that “if enough of you come, you’ll be distributed; so a lot of you should come,” Minister Szijjártó said. “This constitutes an invitation to migrants, which is against Europe’s security interests,” he added

The foreign minister has said that Bulgaria’s most recent proposal on migration is “alarming”.

Péter Szijjártó, minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, said the plan was based on the mandatory redistribution of migrants across the European Union and would pose a “serious danger” to Europe.

Minister Szijjártó said the proposal put forward by Bulgaria, which holds the bloc’s rotating presidency, suggests that the EU should redistribute migrants among its member states if it were faced with a migration wave similar to the one seen in 2015.

Bulgaria’s proposal essentially means that “if enough of you come, you’ll be distributed; so a lot of you should come,” Minister Szijjártó said. “This constitutes an invitation to migrants, which is against Europe’s security interests,” he added.

Minister Szijjártó insisted that the proposal called for the redistribution of migrants without a headcount or time limit. If adopted, member states would have to start taking in migrants immediately and according to Bulgaria’s calculations, central European countries would have to take in the most people.

“This completely goes against both common sense and the security interests of the European people,” Minister Szijjártó said.

The minister also criticized a clause in the proposal suggesting that member states that take in migrants voluntarily would have access to additional funding. He said Hungary had to protect its southern borders “with all its power”, noting that Austria had recently said it would close its borders if necessary.

“Hungary doesn’t want to become a final destination in the event of a major migration wave, since it’s clear that the situation in Greece is only getting worse,” he said.

The minister also said sources in Greece were comparing the country’s current migrant situation to 2015. Meanwhile, a new migration route is taking shape in the Western Balkans passing through Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina.